Being Bullied

Who is being bullied?

Being bullied is nothing to be ashamed of. The biggest thing to understand about bullying is that anyone can be a victim. The stereotype of jocks and nerds doesn’t hold true anymore.

However, some cliches are still accurate. New students at school are usually more vulnerable to the attentions of a bully. Luckily, experts have recognized this, so teachers and counselors are on the lookout for potential problems.

Girls bully, boys bully, though research has shown they do so in slightly different ways. For example, boys bully in a visible and physical way, and are more likely to bully strangers and acquaintances. Identifying girl bullying however, is harder. Girl bullies are concerned about secrecy, and other girls may not immediately identify attacks as “bullying,” calling it “drama” instead. Girl bullying is also more likely to occur within friend groups.

Bullying at schools and universities,  workplace bullying, bullying in the military (also known as hazing), bullying on social networks and in online games all fall under the definition of bullying.

Are there different kinds of bullying?

It’s important to remember that when people are talking about griefing, hazing or social exclusion, they are still talking about forms of bullying.

Social exclusion is purposefully ignoring someone to hurt them. For example, a bully might organize a silent treatment against someone in their friend group. That person is then being bullied.

Bullying can happen to anyone, even adults. Moreover, bullies themselves are victims. Children who bully are 60 percent more likely to have a criminal conviction by the age of 24, as compared to children that don’t bully. Victims can continue to suffer throughout their lives, due to lasting emotional scars. These are very serious consequences, and for this reason particularly serious cases of school bullying can end up in court.

The problem of bullying became so visible that by March 2012, every state in the United States — with the exception of Montana — had adopted some kind of anti-bullying legislation.

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